Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 20 Issue 01

View Issue TOC
Volume 20, No. 1
Pages 24 - 25


Direct Access to the Sub-Vent Biosphere by Shallow Drilling

By Jun-ichiro Ishibashi , Katsumi Marumo , Akihiko Maruyama, and Tetsuro Urabe  
Jump to
Citation Copyright & Usage
First Paragraph

Studying hydrothermal systems by examining the seafloor alone only offers a two-dimensional view of a three-dimensional system. Although technologically challenging, accessing the subsurface to directly sample rocks, microorganisms, and fluids beneath active hydrothermal fields is imperative. Conventional ship-based drilling seldom recovers intact the uppermost section of the seafloor that is most interesting for hydrothermal studies: the long ship-to-seafloor drillstring is unstable until it has penetrated at least several tens of meters into the seafloor. It is possible to avoid this problem by using a drilling system on the seafloor, although this, too, is fraught with challenges, including high temperatures, circulating hot water, and soft and bit-clogging sticky sediments.


Ishibashi, J.-I., K. Marumo, A. Maruyama, and T. Urabe. 2007. Direct access to the sub-vent biosphere by shallow drilling. Oceanography 20(1):24–25, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2007.76.

Copyright & Usage

This is an open access article made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution, and reproduction in any medium or format as long as users cite the materials appropriately, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate the changes that were made to the original content. Images, animations, videos, or other third-party material used in articles are included in the Creative Commons license unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If the material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission directly from the license holder to reproduce the material.